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A Much Bigger Piece Of Pi

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the mmmm-pi dept.

Science 729

Punk_Rock_Johnny points to an AP story on Pi-obsessed Professor Yasumasa Kanada. A snippet from the story: "Kanada and a team of researchers set a new world record by calculating the value of pi to 1.24 trillion places, project team member Makoto Kudo said yesterday. The previous record, set by Kanada in 1999, was 206.158 billion places." Trillion! "

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This first post... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832383)

Isn't a troll or Flamebait. HAH

Whitney (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832385)

Is so cute!

One simple question (2, Insightful)

Tafs (624899) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832386)

Why?

Re:One simple question (3, Funny)

Nyh (55741) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832408)

Because pi is there. And they still have found only the tiniest fraction of the total of decimals of pi...

Nyh!

Re:One simple question (1, Insightful)

Tafs (624899) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832445)

Well, I could accept it if was possible to find all the decimals, and be done with it. But that can't be done.

Re:One simple question (2, Insightful)

Dexter's Laboratory (608003) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832521)

No matter how many decimals they calculate, that "tiny fraction" will always be just as tiny as always...

I'll go an fuk myself now kthx (-1)

Sir Bard (605512) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832387)

EKrout is a known troll bitches

To quote The Rock (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832390)

Do you like ... pi?

What's your favorite kind of ... pi?

Is it... pumpkin... pi?
Is it... peach... pi?
Or is POONTANG pi?

Well ... what is it? (3, Funny)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832392)

How about we see this bad boy!? I'd sure like to paste it into my "info.txt" file for future referance. It could come in handy sometime.

Re:Well ... what is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832410)

1.24 trillion places? If you were to display that as a text string you would need 1.24 trillion bytes. You would need over one terabyte of disk space to hold that info.txt.

Re:Well ... what is it? (4, Informative)

mfos.org (471768) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832514)

Actually, since this is not text data, but numbers, you don't need to waste a whole byte to store a number, if my calculations are correct (probably aren't, hey its early) you only need 514 billion bytes

Re:Well ... what is it? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832430)

You aren't too bright, are you?

Re:Well ... what is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832450)

im pretty sure he's being sarcastic

Re:Well ... what is it? (2, Interesting)

WesG (589258) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832452)

So if I did my math correctly:
1240000000000 characters * 8 bits/character = 9920000000000 bytes

9920000000000 bytes/ 1024000 = 9687500 MB

9687500 MB = 9.6875 TB

Thats a pretty darn big info.txt file!

I think I'll just use the 32 byte version for my SIG. :-)

3.14

Re:Well ... what is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832470)

Um, no. Just say 1 byte = 1 character. Hence 1.24 trillion chars = 1.24 trillion bytes or a pinch over 1 terabyte.

Re:Well ... what is it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832522)

3.0000000000000000000000000000000000000... [biblegateway.com] (you get the picture).

Huge! (1)

Wiseazz (267052) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832393)

That's lots and lots.

Re:Huge! (2)

Subcarrier (262294) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832436)

If you wrote it on a piece of paper, it would reach around the world 140 times.

Re:Huge! (4, Funny)

barnsleyBigUn (84793) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832491)

Not with my doctors handwriting ... it'd still fit onto a prescription! ;-)

I dunno about you, but... (5, Interesting)

Hilleh (561336) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832395)

How come I can see this making a kick-ass distributed computing project? Pi@Home, here we come!

Re:I dunno about you, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832420)

I already get lots of pi at home.

PiHex (1)

Gudlyf (544445) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832433)

Already done, it seems: PiHex [cecm.sfu.ca]

Re:PiHex (1)

Hilleh (561336) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832478)

From the website: "PiHex was a distributed computing project which used idle computing power to set three records for calculating specific bits of Pi. PiHex has now finished." Well, I guess we've already finished calculating Pi then! ;)

Re:PiHex (0)

mkrist (586065) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832495)

It also seems that the project is done:

PiHex is now finished. You can still download the PiHex client, but it won't do much since it needs to communicate with the server (which no longer exists).

This was found at the download page.

OK, now this is overkill (2)

Rhinobird (151521) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832397)

I think I read somewhere that to draw a circle to circumscrible the known universe with a an error of +/- the width of a proton, you only need to know Pi to about 20 places. What practical purpose is there to know pi to 1.whatever trillion places. Unless, of course, you're Count Duckula, in which case it's a party trick.

Re:OK, now this is overkill (4, Insightful)

DoctorNathaniel (459436) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832461)

Hmm..

size of the proton: ~ 1 fm = 10^-15 m
age of the universe: ~15 Gyr
speed of expansion ~ c = 3 x 10^8 m/s

gives:
proton/cosmic radius ~ 10^-42

So you need about 40 places for this. Of course, you might want to calculated it to the Plank scale, so maybe tack on a few more.. say 100 for safety. Yes, a trillion digits does seem a bit like overkill.

Re:OK, now this is overkill (2)

sielwolf (246764) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832523)

Well I guess the problem is statistical round-off error (i.e. as the number of values multiplied together increases, the error also is going up, so you have to round down as it is no longer accurate to that number of places). What I was taught:

When multiplying a*b = c, the place of c is the lesser place value of a OR b MINUS one.

So no matter what, to be accurate/not cheat, you are slowly losing granularity as you churn out the calculations.

If there is a God, I hope that he DOES have Pi out to some ludicrous number of digits. I don't want to see the round off error of those calculations ;)

Re:OK, now this is overkill (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832486)

to see if god left a message ;)

If Pi were made into a classic video game... (3, Funny)

Jace of Fuse! (72042) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832402)

We would have either found the end by now or discovered a pattern.

heh.

YAY! (1)

b0ycheese (587473) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832404)

That's gonna make for one accurate circle!

Ahhh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832405)

Wow, that just did it for me. Time for a smoke.

How? (2, Interesting)

PoiBoy (525770) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832406)

Just how is Pi calculated? Are there any free apps available for Linux that I could look at to see how it is done?

How To Calculate Pi (3, Interesting)

DrDevil (90608) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832441)

You can calculate Pi by doing:

(1 - 1/3 + 1/5 - 1/7 + 1/9 - 1/11 + ..) x 4

Obviously the more iterations you do, the closer you will be to the 'true' value of Pi.

Re:How? (3, Informative)

Gudlyf (544445) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832458)

You could always just do it with Good ol' Calculus [aol.com] .

Re:How? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832494)

There is a number of ways each involving a calculation of an infinitere series:

For instance Walli's formula:

(Pi/2) = (2*2)/(1*3)*(4*4)/(3*5)*(6*6)/(5*7)...

Or

Pi = SUMk=0 to infinity 16-k [ 4/(8k+1) - 2/(8k+4) - 1/(8k+5) - 1/(8k+6) ]

by David Bailey, Peter Borwein, and Simon Plouffe

The reason this pi formula is so interesting is because it can be used to calculate the N-th digit of Pi (in base 16) without having to calculate all of the previous digits!

See http://www.math.hmc.edu/funfacts/

Re:How? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832510)

Just type
echo "scale=500;4*a(1);"|bc -l
in a shell, where 500 is the number of decimals you wish.

Re:How? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832512)

I'm betting they just used Pi from windows calculator and int(rand()*10) for every digit after that

no purpose in math? (1)

slavemowgli (585321) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832407)

From the article:

Figuring out pi to much more than about 1,000 decimal places serves little purpose in math or engineering.
I cautiously agree with regard to engineering, but math?

Re:no purpose in math? (2)

nusuth (520833) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832515)

1000 decimal places of pi for engineering is an overkill of more than two magnitudes. 4 to 9 decimal places are quite enough, depending on what exactly you want to calculate. Even one (that is 3, not 3.1) may do sometimes.

As for math, I don't think there is anything at all learnable from actual digits of pi. We know they neither end nor repeat. Actual values are just trivia. It could as well have been 3.76421403038164659... and nobody would care.

The 1.24th trillion digit of pi is .. (5, Funny)

gargle (97883) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832411)

The number Six!

OMG! That's 4+2 !!!!! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832457)

42 really is the answer to life, the universe, and everything!!!

Re:The 1.24th trillion digit of pi is .. (0)

Jacek Poplawski (223457) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832475)

And next two are six and six. The number of the beast is hidden inside PI. Humanity found it today, and now whole world is doomed. Watch out, apocalypse is coming!

Re:The 1.24th trillion digit of pi is .. (2, Funny)

edbarrett (150317) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832526)

Bert: My favorite number is 6.
Ernie: Bert, nobody's favorite number is 6!

math question about pi (3, Interesting)

selectspec (74651) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832412)

Does the problem that pi can't be expressed in decimal notation extend to other base systems? For example, if you tried to write pi out in binary or hex would you encounter the same problem? Is there a special base system (other than base pi) which can describe pi in a finite number of digits?

Re:math question about pi (5, Funny)

Moeses (19324) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832419)

You can write Pi as 1 (base Pi).

Re:math question about pi (3, Funny)

isorox (205688) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832507)

He said other then base Pi.

You can write it as 0.5 (base 2Pi)

Re:math question about pi (1)

Fruit (31966) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832518)

You'd have to write it as 10 then :)

Re:math question about pi (4, Informative)

DJPenguin (17736) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832424)

No - pi is irrational... as far as I know this would be the case for base-n where n is of course an integer.

Re:math question about pi (2, Interesting)

agdv (457752) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832455)

No - pi is irrational


Okay, I've heard this many times, and I don't doubt it's true. But are there any simple elegant proofs of this (like the one for proving that the square root of 2 is irrational), or are the proofs very involved, or are there no proofs at all except "well, nobody has found the end yet"?

Re:math question about pi (5, Informative)

Dunark (621237) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832464)

Pi is worse than irrational - it's trascendental. Merely irrational numbers can be expressed as simple expressions with finite numbers of terms, but transcendentals require an infinite number of terms.

Pi are ROUND! Cornbread are square! (1)

drdanny_orig (585847) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832524)

... that's whut Uncle Daddy taught me in school.

Re:math question about pi (2)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832476)

No. Conversion to any other base does not make Pi become non-irrational. The base does not make any magic transformation occur that changes Pi from an irrational number to a rational number. It's just not possible.

You know ... you would think ... (0, Flamebait)

SuperDuG (134989) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832413)

... that someone who could calculate pi to that precision would realize the number was infinite, no matter how much he tries, it will just keep going. Hence we will never see a "perfect" circle (unless you're talking the band ..) ... or will we?

Pi is represented usually by a fraction or relatively simple equation, it's just the division that makes the number go on for ever. I don't understand why we must break pi down into a decimal when it can already be represented by a simple fraction. Figuring pi beyond the ten thousandth spot is overkill.

However, it has always been a bragging right for many a geek to find as many places in pi as possible, and now that has been accomplished. I also have created a new world record. Taking the equation two divided by three I have found the 100000 trillionth digit ... it's "3" ...

Re:You know ... you would think ... (0)

Tafs (624899) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832472)

If you can write pi as a simple fraction, please share it with the rest of us. I'd be very impressed.

Re:You know ... you would think ... (2)

SuperDuG (134989) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832487)

22 / 7 = PI

Re:You know ... you would think ... (2, Informative)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832480)

Pi is represented usually by a fraction or relatively simple equation, it's just the division that makes the number go on for ever. I don't understand why we must break pi down into a decimal when it can already be represented by a simple fraction.

This is a bit misleading - since Pi is irrational, representing it as a fraction (eg, 22/7) is only an approximation. Representing these divisions usually produce an infinite expansion in decimal (if that's what you mean by "it's just the division that makes the number go on for ever"), but that number is recurring, and thus easy to work out any arbitrary digit since it repeats. This article is about working out the true value of Pi, whose decimal expansion is infinite and non-recurring, and this has nothing to do with divisions.

Taking the equation two divided by three I have found the 100000 trillionth digit ... it's "3"

Yes.. working out digits of rational numbers is slightly easy than irrational ones. Irrational numbers, by definition, can't be represented as the ratio of two integers.

No, pi is irrational (5, Interesting)

smcv (529383) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832504)

Pi is represented usually by a fraction or relatively simple equation, it's just the division that makes the number go on for ever.

Nope. If pi was rational (a fraction), it wouldn't go on for ever without repeating. (reference [wolfram.com] )

In fact pi is irrational, i.e. there are no integers p, q such that pi = p / q. (proof [clemson.edu] )

You can approximate pi as a fraction, which is what projects like this do. (pi is approximately equal to 31/10, or 314/100, or 31416/1000, or ... but these are just approximations; 22/7 is a good enough approximation a lot of the time, but that's just an approximation too)

Re:You know ... you would think ... (1)

Pius II. (525191) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832505)

While I agree that this kind of precision is rather useless, it is not true that pi can be described by a fraction. If that were so, pi would be a rational number, rather than a real one. Pi is also transcendent (proven 1882 by Lindemann), i.e. it can't be written as the solution of a polynom with integral coefficients.
BTW, under http://pi314.at/math/irrational.html is proof that pi isn't a rational number.

Re:You know ... you would think ... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832517)

Taking the equation two divided by three I have found the 100000 trillionth digit ... it's "3"

Actually, if you divide two by three the 100000 trillionth digit would be "6" ... but what do I know ;)

More Please (2)

dirkdidit (550955) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832415)

A Much Bigger Piece Of Pi

Doesn't matter, I still want seconds. With ice cream!

Why? (2)

SlamMan (221834) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832416)

How could this ever be useful? I mean that as an honest question, what could anyone, ever, use this for?

How to calculate PI yourself (5, Funny)

renosteve (628802) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832422)

One way to calculate for yourself the value of pi is to drop a lot of toothpicks onto a large piece of paper that has lines drawn on it!

Here's how it works. You'll need several boxes of toothpicks. Get a large piece of chart paper, and draw parallel lines on it, from one side to the other. The lines should be separated by a distance just slightly larger than the length of a toothpick.

From a height of about one metre, drop a measured number of toothpicks onto the chart paper, so that they all fall randomly somewhere on the paper. Count how many toothpicks are touching a line (or would be, if they weren't resting on another toothpick).

Repeat this process as many times as you can. Lots of people can do it at once. All that's important is that, each time you drop some toothpicks, you write down how many you dropped, and how many of those ended up touching a line. When you're done, find a total for each quantity.

You now have all the numbers you need to calculate Pi:

c ... toothpick length (in mm) <BR>
a ... line separation (in mm) <BR>
N ... total number of toothpicks dropped <BR>
M ... total number of intersections <BR>
(c must be less than a) <BR>

Now here's the formula you need to calculate Pi:

PI = 2cN / aM
Fill them in the formula, and work out your own value of Pi!

Re:How to calculate PI yourself (2)

DJPenguin (17736) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832440)

Informative? come on now...!

Re:How to calculate PI yourself (5, Funny)

Jacek Poplawski (223457) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832485)

One way to calculate for yourself the value of pi is to drop a lot of toothpicks onto a large piece of paper that has lines drawn on it!

You are toothpicks seller, aren't you?

The 1.24 trillionth digit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832423)

So does anybody know what the current 'last' digit of pi is?

Re:The 1.24 trillionth digit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832437)

7

(Actually, I have no idea, but I figure my odds are 1 in 10 of being right.)

I like this quote: (2)

big_groo (237634) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832425)

Figuring out pi to much more than about 1,000 decimal places serves little purpose in math or engineering

And in 100 years it'll be:

Figuring out pi to much more than about 100,000 decimal places serves little purpose in math or engineering

WOMBAT!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832426)

Millions are spent by government to research technologies to allow us to jerk around in chat rooms, watch pr0n and download warez, and this guy does what?

CALCULATES MATHEMATIC GEEK STUFF???

NERD!!!!!!

Faking it ... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832428)

How to fake it:
int main()
{
cout << 3.1415926535897932384626433832795;

for(int i=0; i<1000000000000; i++)
cout << rand();

return 0;
}

I know its irrational.... (1)

christurkel (520220) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832435)

but I love Pi!

Signature of God? (5, Interesting)

Speare (84249) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832438)

In the book version of Contact by Carl Sagan, but skipped in the Jodie Foster movie, was the notion that the aliens had discovered proof that the universe was created by a higher intelligence. A God or society of Gods far higher and more advanced than the aliens. The whole point of dragging Human-kind to that remote beach to talk with daddy was to tell Human-kind that it was time for them to look for God's signature on this universe.

As any artist, the creator signed the creation. Where? Deep into the insignificant but irrefutably valid digits of several of the fundamental mathematical constants such as pi and e.

The main character finds one of the signatures at the end of the book: if calculating digits of pi in base 11, after a few million or billion places, a 500x500 digit span is almost entirely zeros. If the span was rendered as a square of pixels, the non-zero digits drew a perfect circle inscribed in the square. A circle in a square. The key concept defining pi, in the digits of pi itself. The whole way the universe works is affected by that constant, so any such 'design' in it has, if you pardon the pun, a transcendental import.

Why base 11? It's left to the reader to decide, but I expect Sagan wrote it because it is considered one of the possible designs of the universe, one of the string theories is based on an 11-dimensional all-inclusive physics model. As the alien explains to the main character, it wouldn't be base 10, because what's the likelihood that the creator also happened to have ten fingers?

Re:Signature of God? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832459)

after a few million or billion places, a 500x500 digit span is almost entirely zeros

First off that is so stupid because it is totally impossible. How can you be doing the long division and get zero for every digit (with an occasional 1). Makes no sense. BAH!!

Re:Signature of God? (1)

whovian (107062) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832493)

I still like Euler's formula (not the one for polyhedra) relating e, pi, i, 0 , and 1:

e^{\pi i} + 1 = 0

Re:Signature of God? (2)

bokmann (323771) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832520)

When I was in college, I wrote a distibuted computing project that drew detailed plot of the Mandelbrot Beetle [geocities.com] . I fantasized that if I could zoom in on JUST the right spot, I'd see "God was here" as if in graffiti. Wouldn't that just be kick ass?

I love this Quote (5, Funny)

Rhinobird (151521) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832439)

I love this quote:
Among the most puzzling mysteries: Mathematicians are pretty sure, but still cannot prove conclusively, that the numbers following 3.141592 occur randomly.


"I don't think we're any closer to answering this question than the Greeks were 2,500 years ago," Borwein said.



Um, you have 1.24 trillion digits of pi. I think you can begin a statisticall analisys now.

Pi! (0)

CommieBozo (617132) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832443)

Didn't anyone notice that the newspaper is called "Seattle Pi?"

Accuracy? (2)

Junior J. Junior III (192702) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832444)

How do they check such a calculation for accuracy?

I'm not trolling, I'm just not mathematician enough to just know.

Re:Accuracy? (3, Informative)

Zapman (2662) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832511)

How do they check the accuracy? Easy!

See:

http://www.math.hmc.edu/funfacts/ffiles/20010.5. sh tml

You can figure out what any digit of pi is, without bothering with any of the preceding digits.

This only does base16, however I remember seeing one that was for base10 as well. When in doubt, google.

Irrational (pi != 22/7) (2, Troll)

Omkar (618823) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832446)

Some people here seem to bee a little uninformed. pi has been proved irrational and trancedental (duh).

Pi (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832447)

1.24 trillion should be enough for anybody.

Pi to Binary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832449)

Whatever you do, don't convert Pi to binary! You'll have brought Windows onto your computer!

obligatory Southpark refference (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832453)

Blame Kanada!

I'll be impressed when he memorizes it... (2)

JohnDenver (246743) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832463)

This story reminds me of conversation we had in High School at the computer club about guys memorizing pi up to the 10 thousandth decimal. At which point, one of the less cool geeks, who happened to pronounce DOS, dose, chimmed in enthousiastically, "I once hear of a guy who memorized 30,000 numbers!"

You can bet your ass the room filled up with Louis Skolnick type laughter, along with ribbing along the lines of, "Once I hit 30,000 I stop counting..."

That was BEFORE we had beowulf cluster jokes!

Quiz (1, Troll)

Jacek Poplawski (223457) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832465)

What is the best way to waste CPU power?

a) calculating another piece of PI
b) running miss Setia Thome software
c) installing Windows

Share your opinion.

Uh oh... (1)

NiKnight3 (532580) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832468)

3.1415926535... ummm... I'll be back in a few thousand years. I have some memorizing to do.

Pi info (4, Informative)

Omkar (618823) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832471)

Dr. Math's Pi FAQ [mathforum.org] . Very informative.

fuderal gov't. "action"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832477)


how come no story about the big raids on *.*software.com? sounds like a debacle. robbIE's waitin' for the "facts" know DOWt.

sad on tv they'se working for the fuds, & the villians, at the same time. yet another feet of modem takeknowledgee? or just more fuderoll bungling? there MUST be a story. some of US .conspiracy buffs are intrigued (not surprised) at the implications.

(:>L0L [trustworthycomputing.com]

Oops! (1)

PhipleTroenix (240551) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832479)

We've discovered an error in the 175,342,986,462th digit. We're going to have to start over...nah, nobody will ever notice.

Precise (1)

dark-br (473115) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832483)

Finaly i can be REALLY precise on my circumferences calculations!

the right answer (1)

svachi (552210) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832484)

Is there any way to check if their value of Pi is really correct, short of calculate those trillion places myself? I have heard that long time ago there was someone annouced the value of Pi to around 1000 places, only to be found wrong afterward.

hitting the end (1)

buttahead (266220) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832490)

wouldn't it be great if they found that there was a last place, and that PI is really only 3 trillion places long. how do we know that PI will continue out forever?

Form Fitting Condoms (1)

cyberlotnet (182742) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832497)

Now they can make condoms that fit better..

Trojan 2003 condoms in YOUR Size
( We use the trillion place pi method to ensure out condoms are the most precise sized condoms out there, Other companys claim better fit but only use a the million place pi method to compute there condom size )

ummm timothy ... (2)

SuperDuG (134989) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832498)

"A trillion is more than a billion numbnuts ... "

(c) Austin Powers and MPAA and protected by the DMCA

A more straightforward approach (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832499)

For simplicity, I prefer to work with the 1897 Indiana pi system. Here's a quick program that quickly prints out pi to any number of digits. It works fine on any PC; performance is bound only by your I/O bandwidth and disk capacity:

#!/usr/bin/python
import sys
sys.stdout.write('3.2')
s = '0' * 4096
while 1: sys.stdout.write(s)

Not sure Pi is irrational? (1)

SashaM (520334) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832500)

Hmm, quoting the article:

Among the most puzzling mysteries: Mathematicians are pretty sure, but still cannot prove conclusively, that the numbers following 3.141592 occur randomly.

Last time I checked, we were pretty sure Pi was irrational, no?

IN SOVIET RUSSIA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832506)

In Soviet Russia, Pi calculates you!

Woopdie doo! (1)

sopwath (95515) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832508)

Just imagine what that 400 hours of supercomputer time could do. I mean, a trillion digits in interesting I guess, but I'd much rather see that processing time go to something useful like protien folding so we can pehaps find a cure for cancer or AIDS or Alzheimers or Parkinsens or ...

why? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4832516)

In all seriousness, there is really no need for Pi to that degree of accuracy.

Hidden humor (2)

mattr (78516) | more than 11 years ago | (#4832519)

I found it hilarious that the story "Professor breaks own record -- for thrill of pi" ended with a link named "Subscribe to the P-I".

And well it should! For it is from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, whose logo is a globe with the initials "P-I". Someone should get those guys to put it on their top page.

Perhaps they held back since it also was posted exactly 61 years after the invasion of Perl Harbor. Oh well.

FWIW, I've been hoping desperately that they'd find some neat geometrical patterns in Pi. My guess is that the reason the mathematicians cannot prove that all those digits are random is that they aren't.. they are just using an extremely good hash algorithm to encrypt the darn thing.
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